Mandatory use of face masks (Maskenpflicht) in Germany

Robert Koch Institute, Germany has reported 183K confirmed corona cases, 165K recovered cases and 8,604 deaths in total till 31.05.2020 in Germany. For more details please check here. Considering the danger due to Corona, all federal states have decided for Mandatory use of face masks (Maskenpflicht) in Germany. Bremen was the last state to do so on Wednesday

Most German states had already decided or announced a mask obligation in the past days
Saxony was the first federal state last Friday to make face masks mandatory.
Minister of Transport Scheuer advises wearing masks also in trains of the Deutsche Bahn and during flights

Compulsory use of face masks (Maskenpflicht) in Germany

According to WHO, masks can minimize the risk of coronavirus infection

In most German states, the obligation applies from next week i.e starting from 27th of April and usually relates to buses and trains and shopping. This week, the federal and state governments agreed to urgently (“dringend”) recommend the Mandatory use of face masks (Maskenpflicht) in Germany. It is a must to use the face mask public transport and retail stores. The German state of Saxony was the first one in making masks mandatory while going out. It has been decided to make masks mandatory in all states, but it will not be implemented the same way everywhere.


The compulsory wearing of masks* in Baden-Württemberg has been decided and will apply from Monday (27 April) on trains and buses and when shopping.

Bavaria (Bayern)

From Monday (27 April) onwards, masks are mandatory in the Free State of Bavaria: in shops and on public transport, mouth and nose must be covered. In this context, the obligation to wear a mask does not necessarily mean that a mask must also be used. Covering with a scarf, for example, is also permissible. In the so-called corona hotspots such as Rosenheim or Straubing, this requirement is more likely to apply.


In the capital Berlin, the mask obligation only applies to local public transport and is not to be used in the retail trade for the time being.


The ban in Berlin’s trains and buses will be extended to neighbouring Brandenburg, where masks are also compulsory in public transport. However, one must also use mouth and nose protection when shopping.


Bremen was the last state to announce that masks would be compulsory for public transport and shops, valid from 27 April.


The city of Hamburg has also decided to make masks compulsory from Monday (27 April). It applies in the retail trade, at weekly markets and on public transport.

Hesse (Hessen)

In Hesse, the mask requirement will also apply from Monday (27 April) and will be extended to bank and post office branches in addition to public transport and shops.

Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania (Mecklenburg-Vorpommern)

The federal state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania had already decided to make masks mandatory for public transport from Monday (27.04.2020) onwards and is now extending this to shopping. The state government decided on Wednesday, according to the state chancellery in Schwerin. The minister-president Manuela Schwesig called for joint action throughout Germany. “It would be good if we regulated the obligation to wear masks uniformly in all German states”. Read here

Lower Saxony (Niedersachsen)

From Monday, April 27, the wearing of a mask will be obligatory in Lower Saxony in local traffic and retail trade. In Braunschweig and Osnabrück it will be introduced two days earlier, while the city of Wolfsburg is already enforcing such a requirement.

North Rhine-Westphalia (Nordrhein-Westfalen)

Although in North Rhine-Westphalia Prime Minister Armin Laschet (CDU) had recently rejected the compulsory wearing of masks, it will also apply in NRW from Monday (27 April).

Rhineland-Palatinate (Rheinland-Pfalz)

In Rhineland-Palatinate, the obligation to wear a mask applies to public transport and shopping and will come into force on Monday, 27 April.


In Saarland, the rules are as same as the federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate. Both states had informed jointly about their approach to the use of facemask in Germany.

Saxony (Sachsen)

In Saxony, the government around Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer (CDU) was the first state in Germany to decide to make masks mandatory for public transport and retail trade.

Saxony-Anhalt (Sachsen-Anhalt)

The federal state of Saxony-Anhalt has made the wearing of face masks compulsory from Thursday, 23 April, on trains and buses and when shopping.


From Wednesday, April 27th, it will no longer be allowed to shop or use public transport in Schleswig-Holstein without a mouth and nose protection. This was decided by the cabinet one week before the date.

Thuringia (Thüringen)

Jena was the first city in Germany to introduce mandatory masks at the beginning of April. Thuringia will now follow the nationwide steps starting from 27th April 2020.

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Rishi Anand

Rishi is a Language enthusiast and Founder and CEO of Linguidoor Translation and Localization Services based in Berlin, Germany. He is passionate about the Localization Industry, and he has a keen interest in sharing Insights, News, and development to create awareness, educate, and inspire.


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